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tv   9 News Now Tonight  CBS  August 24, 2010 7:00pm-7:30pm EDT

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across the street was sexually assaulted. when a man entered her first floor apartment through an unlocked window or sliding glass door. she was also asleep. it was 3:20 a.m. police released this sketch of her attacker and now believe the same man could be responsible for both crimes. >> i'm lindsay in leesburg. investigators are trying to figure out how a local woman was killed. >> this is the burned out shed where investigators found the body of carnelia arnold. >> the fire was called into dispatch at 5:47. about 40 minutes before that, leesburg police say someone called them to ask about filing a missing person's report. the report was never filed. her body was found next to the shed. at this time, he says there are no suspects and no motive. >> i would have to venture to say, it would be someone familiar with the area. someone who may have been there before. been back in through the woods
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and through these trails to know there are structures in there. >> earlier today, a home heating oil contractor dumped 325-gallons of oil in this house, but it was the wrong house. >> in this particular case, the home heating oil tank had been removed some time ago, but the piping had been allowed to remain in place. >> fortunately, there was a drain in the basement, so all but ten gallons remained. >> had the oil not had a drain around it, yes, it could have been a lot worse. >> nearby at 1129 where that oil was supposed to go, firefighters were here and the hazmat trucks. >> ten inapts are grateful everyone is safe. >> they are all townhouses so if something happens to one of them, then you have a lot of issues with a lot of the other properties, too. >> turns out water was the problem for crews along burgundy road this morning. a 6-inch water main burst between norton road and elmwood drive and 35 customers lost
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their water service. in the district, watt ther is still flowing out of a broken main. that 30-inch main broke last friday. dc water tells us the city has to completely drain the main in what's called a blowoff procedure. crews expect that pipe to be open by the weekend. let's see if either of those breaks are taking a toll on our ride home. >> traffic moving into georgetown, a lot of congestion getting to town. it's a nice night out there. a lot of people out on the roadways. take it slow wherever you are going. if you are heading out of dc. on 395, things are looking fantastic. everybody moving at speed past duke street to the mixing bowl and finally on 495 throughout virginia and maryland, looking good. not much traffic. derek, back to you. >> amtrak is back up and running tonight between dc and new york.
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a power outage this morning disrupted service for amtrak, mark, philadelphia, even new jersey transit was affected. the outage lasted a bit more than an hour. a failure of wires above the tracks is to blame. from downed power lines to exploding transformers, pepco had more than its share of problems over the last month or so. customer complaints led to a hearing before the maryland public service commission last week and the president of pepco is here to answer some of your questions and many of ours. tom graham is joining me now. thanks for coming in, good to see you. point of personal disclosure, we grew up in dc. we have known each other for years. what happened to pepco? you had time to think about this. how did you go from being one of the best to one of the worst based on those ratings and was it complacency? what happened? >> we kind of have to start and we have to start back in july. we have to make a distinction between every day reliability
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and the storm. and i think what has really caught our customer's attention is the storm in february where we had 36 inches of snow. we had 323,000 customers out of service in july. we had 83 polls snapped. 127 transformers that had to be replaced. >> all right. >> 92% of those are as a result of trees coming down on our wires. >> you are talking about the bad weather and nothing you can do about that. let's say this. if 90% of outages were caused by the trees, in your 6 point improvement plan, you can going to spend $36 million through vegetation management. what percentage of the problem trees will be dealt with in that time and how can we hold you accountable for that? >> we want to be accountable. our total plan is $256 million. it's more than vegetation management and that's a big portion of it. unfortunately, you have to go step by step to determine
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whether those actions are effective. >> okay but again, what percentage of the trees, by this time, 75% or 85%, will be dealt with by the end of this five years? >> i can't say. i can't say how many of those trees are still going to fall. we had literally hundreds of trees that fell down on the line. it is unclear to me how effective that vegetation management will be on a major storm, but what i can commit to, communications are going to be better and day-to-day reliability will be bert for our customers. >> a lot of viewers put their questions up there. i want to share some of them. i'd ask him if he would be willing to take a pay cut for every day that outages have happened in the service area for lack of maintenance issues. >> not willing to go that far, but what i'm willing to do is commit to our plan. we think it's a great plan. it's a 6 point plan and by the end of this week, we are going
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to roll out more details and talk about exactly which communities we are going to be working with through the end of this year. >> are you going to have a special focus on montgomery county, which has been hammered over the last couple of months? >> all customers are important, but our plan will focus on montgomery county first and we'll release a plan for prince georges county and for the district of columbia. >> of all the local utilities, why does pepco bare the brunt of outages? pepco seems to have more more affected customers and the ration seems lasting longer than al alagaeny, etcetera. >> can't control the weather. our response was effective. within the first 24 hours, we restored service within 48 hours. restored 230,000 customers within 72 hours. 90% of our customers had their
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service restored. i know that's not fast enough for our customers, but considering the amount of damage that we experienced, we did a great job. >> one of the things you always bring up about cutting back the trees is property owners who won't allow you to perform that kind of maintenance. if someone says, hey listen. you can't cut my tree back, why don't you tell the neighbors. old man johnson won't let me cut his tree. >> i'm not sure we are going to take that track. what we are going to do is work with the communities. we think this is a community plan that we are putting forward. we know it's over a five-year period. it's not a five minute plan. i was asked earlier today, we have a power outage, your 6 point plan isn't working. we have been doing some work, but what i'm asking is our customers to be patient with us, because it will take time. >> when you get to the end, what will you point to so customers will know that the plan is working? how can we hold you
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accountable? you keep asking us to follow up. what are the numbers going to say? >> frequency and duration are the numbers you need to look at and that's what we are committing to. we are going to improve on those areas. duration outages. >> can you give me an idea of how much less? 55% less, what should we look for? >> we are going to approach it feeder by feeder, but when we have done these types of actions in the past, we have experienced up to 40, 60% improvement. >> the other question that keeps coming up, putting the wires under ground. i know it's very expensive. i think it's getting to the point where some of us would be willing to pay extra. >> a half million a mile. >> how much would that break down per customer. >> if we did $11 million a mile over 14,000 miles, that gets into the billions of dollars. what we want to do in our six- point plan is look at selective under grounding, where it would not be expensive for customers,
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but the one thing that you have to consider if you look at putting all of our facilities under ground, there are some customer costs as well. so if they are not up to code, that's a cost they would have to incur. >> tom, i appreciate you coming in. we are out of time, but thanks for giving us a good bit to think about. we appreciate it. we also want to thank those who placed their questions on our facebook page. we'll be back. i'm topper shutt. the clouds kept the temperatures down and no showers. look at these temperatures, low 70s across the board. we'll come back and talk about whether or not we'll see showers overnight and we'll talk about hurricane danielle. and wait until you hear the details about that backup. stay with us.
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back now with a scene we never want to see around here, although some would say it's not all that far off. these drivers in china stuck in traffic for nine days. trucks started to slow down to a snail's pace. apparently there was construction. well then cars behind them started to break down and the delay, local villagers made cash selling food and fuel to all the folks stuck in the
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backup. dc counselor chair defeated adrian fenty in the latest poll. 18 votes for gray. 108 voted for mayor fenty. this is the 7th straw poll win for gray and that leads into the september primary. meantime, organizers are expecting 300,000 people on their way to dc this weekend for a rally at the lincoln memorial. members of the tea party movement are coming in to hear commentator glenn beck and former alaskan governor, sarah palin. tonight it's a local blogger's take on the city that is capturing headlines. a guy for out of towners, including which metro lines to take and which to stay away from and what parts of our area are considered safe. it was picked up by a blogger in maine and then the national immediate y got ahold of it. >> i'm trying to give the advice i would give my mother if she was coming to dc and she was going to wander around dc while i was at work. >> i travel all over the place and never had any issues or
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problems. >> metro and dc tourism officials did not want to comment on the story. >> what do you think? are there places you tell people not to go? is that common sense or was it somehow descrim nay dediscrimination and unfair? still to come, check in with topper. we'll find out how long this stretch of cooler weather will hang out. and one of the most polarizing figures says it's time for a change. hear from him next.
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i think everything tastes better in the summer. my grandparents, they had a huge garden, with tomatoes and cucumbers and green beans. nothing beats the taste of fruits and vegetables in the summer. they're juicier. more colorful. they're perfect. that's why at giant, you'll find farm-stand quality fruits and vegetables, at prices you'll love. this week, enjoy summer berries, 2 for $4, and tomatoes on the vine, $1.77 a pound. my grandfather would be very proud, and that works for me. celebrate summer, every time you shop with your giant card.
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kids in six more local school systems head back to school tomorrow. in maryland, the bell rings for students in garrett and st. mary's county. in virginia, it's back to class in clark, culpeper, and frederick counties. you can see the start date for all our local school systems at wusa9.com. just click on extras. the superintendent of montgomery county schools is calling it quits. dr. jerry weast says he plans
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to retire at the end of this school year. he is the longest serving school superintendent around here and under his watch, montgomery county schools had the highest graduation rate of any largest school system in this country. today, the doctor looks bad at all the activities. >> 21 days of sniper, anthrax. two of the biggest snowstorms that ever hit in the county. electricity going off. we still raised scores. >> dr. weast says he sees his future at some sort of nonprofit organization. maryland and dc schools are cashing in on that race to the top. the systems will receive millions of dollars in grants. maryland gets $250 million. the district will get $75 million. virginia did not apply for those grants. frederick county took some time today to honor its heros. this morning ceremony paid tribute to county workers
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involved in last winter's snow recovery area. the area weathered 23 inches of snow in december and in february, back to back storms. and one of those february storms, crews had to dig through 6 to 8-foot snow drifts in order to reach more than two dozen drivers who have been stranded out on those local roads. scenes we all soon rather forget, i think. back to back 26-inch snowstorms in that area. >> that was ridiculous. >> so today, much nicer. >> yeah, the clouds hung tough, which is fine. and it was much cooler. today is also the anniversary, not a great anniversary. 18th anniversary of hurricane andrew. hit early in the morning and originally we thought it was a category four. >> so land as a five? >> wow. 160-mile per hour winds when it hit. in terms of pressure, it's the third strongest storm to hit the 48 states behind camille and behind the big labor day storm in the keyings. but that was an incredible
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storm. you want to read more about it, go to our website and check out my blog. let's talk about hurricane danielle. the good news, she's going to pass well east of us and just east of bermuda. probably as a category 2. high end category 2. maybe a low end category 3. this is the hamilton one. late saturday, early sunday she will be going past bermuda. there's a storm behind this we have to watch. it will take a more westerly trek. you might want to down load our 9 hurricane tracker, it's free. the next three days, 79 tomorrow. 85 on thursday. a shower possible. just fantastic on friday. low humidity. lots of sunshine. low 80s. tough to beat. we'll break down tomorrow. in the morning, a slight chance of a sprinkle. upper 60s. most of the roads will be dry. a sprinkle possible and then by evening, because of a few more breaks in the clouds, temperatures will be near 80
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degrees. right now, fantastic. 72 in college park and 70 up in rockville. 72 out in sterling. for tonight, mostly cloudy, cool, a few showers possible. low temperatures in the 60s. winds out of the north at 10. lows inside the beltway will be comfortable. mid 60s downtown. 63 in reston. look at this. 61 out in leesburg. it's a good deal. tomorrow morning, mostly cloudy, cool, a shower possible. 60s and 70s and by afternoon, a few more breaks in the cloud cover. still relatively cool for this time of year. slight chance of a shower. high temperature 75 to 80. satellite picture, radar combined, kept the clouds in, but most of the showers are well to the west of us. so again, we are in good shape. next seven days, near 80 tomorrow. maybe a sprinkle. maybe a shower on thursday and then just great. friday low 80s with sunshine. full sunshine on saturday and
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sunday. don't let the 90 degrees fool you, low humidity. we are in the low 90s and sunshine on monday and tuesday of next week. >> thank you, top. let's get to the weird news file. you probably heard of the soothing powers of a hot stone massage. to india where the annual stone pelting festival. yeah, thousands of villagers actually throwing rocks at each other. they are doing it to please the goddess. this happens at a temple, where a hero killed a demon. the stone pelting ritual reenacts that triumph over evil as you see those taking part are allowed to protect themselves with those big wooden shields, but they consider their injuries as blessings. >> give me a marshmellow. we want to hear what you think. send your e-mails to mcginty's mail bag. the address, mailbag@wusa9.com. 9news now will be right back.
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we have breaking news for you. sky 9 live where a man was severely shocked after hitting a power line. police say he was trying to trim branches outside his house. no word yet on his condition. we'll bring you more tonight on 9news now at 11:00. in the mail bag tonight, albert haynesworth has a bit to say about how he is being mistreated by the management. the big fellow will find no sympathy in the mail bag. debra says she is sick of him. my solution is cut your losses. he is disrespectful to his lawyers, staff, and fellow teammates, if he stays, he won't perform anyway. enough of the distractions, let the real men play ball. and then there's maryland who calls herself the number one redskins fan in virginia. she says big al's attitude is a detriment. so let dan snyder realize this
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was vinnie's fault and write fat albert off as a loss. albert is crying he isn't going to attend the ota next year, he hasn't gotten through this year first. and right now; haynesworth is haynesworthless. if his illness is enough to keep him out of shape, it's enough to keep him off the playing field. she needs to start acting like and practicing like a starter. right now, he sounds like a big cry baby to me. but paul says enough is enough about haynesworth. too much attention by the media. he should keep his mouth shut, be a team player and play football by contributing 100%. you know what? i feel you, as they say, but keep in mind, dan snyder's huge investment in this guy, i don't blame him and let's say this, if haynesworth can get it together and start making big plays during the real season, all will be forgotten or at least forgiven. hopefully you won't forget to
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write mcginty's mail bag. the address is mailbag@wusa9.com. don't forget, log on any time to wusa9.com. have a great evening, we'll see you later. bye. some people don't notice the difference between meat and mystery when they enter... the frozen zone. with my perdue frozen nuggets, there is no mystery, just real, all white meat, made with 100% natural ingredients. perdue frozen chicken. all white meat. no mystery.
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smiling. laughing. playing with their kids in the same room. the divorce is official. now, the real story behind these exclusive shots. plus -- what's next for little sam and charlie? the anna nicole smith trial today and the lost video that only the jury saw until now. >> i was drunk and on drugs. i'm losing it. what this new interview may reveal about anna and drugs. and sofia's boyfriend in intensive care. the latest news on his condition. plus, heidi montag, is she losing her nose from extreme plastic surgery. in tonight's "e.t." sli slideshow, drew barrymore with justin long. and christina applegate. and which superstar is seeing this sexy

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